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Purple on the rocks

  I have the real pleasure of writing my first blog post of 2022 about a trip to Battery Point, Portishead, Bristol to photograph Purple Sandpipers (Calidris Maritima). As many of my readers will know I love waders probably above all bird species and so when I had the opportunity to get some pictures with my good friend Paul Joy of this rare, specially protected and very confiding wader species that winters in the UK coastland I was really excited. Up until this point I had never seen a Purple Sandpiper. They are small waders, bigger than a Dunlin but slightly smaller and less robust than a Turnstone.  They migrate to the UK in the winter from as far away places as Canada, Greenland, Svalbard, Fennoscandia and Russia. They then spend their time along the coasts roosting and feeding on various rocky outcrops. They have a preference for rocks covered with seaweeds where they forage for insects, molluscs and crustaceans. They get their names because of a Purple sheen that can be seen in t

Some different visitors this morning

Its amazing the variety of animals that live in or along the river. This morning I watched a fleet of Swans swim by with their signets and then a small flotilla of female Goosander nervously fished in front of the hide.

A Common Sandpiper foraged on the river bank close to the waters edge near my hide. Frustratingly its never in my cameras view so I have been unable to get a photo without disturbing it.

I heard something eating and looked down and watched a Grey Squirrel eating directly in front of me.

Quite a few Kingfishers around but did not visit the perch. Instead I had to make do with a Chiff Chaff for company.

On packing up today what struck me most was how clear the river water was and it was full of fish fry.


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